Can U2 Be Cool Again?

Thursday, December 29th, 2016

U2 has something in common with its corporate partner Apple: they both make a lot of money. And they both struggle to be cool. U2 earns gigantic paydays with high-profile concert tours that appeal to its Baby Boomer fan base. According to Forbes, U2 was one of the highest paid musical ...

The New OK Go Video Is a Brilliant Co-Brand

Thursday, February 11th, 2016

I'll bet you've never heard of S7 Airlines. But you'll be hearing more about the Russia-based airline now that OK Go released a new video, "Upside Down & Inside Out." "Upside Down & Inside Out" is the latest crazy video from OK Go, a band that long ago set the standard ...

Jermaine Dupri Wants to Save R&B with New Jagged Edge Album

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

If you want to get a rise out of music legend Jermaine Dupri, ask him about the new Jagged Edge album, J.E. Heartbreak II. Dropping October 27, J.E. Heartbreak II reunites Dupri with the group he signed to his So So Def record label in 1997. And Dupri promises that ...

Apple Pays Dearly for U2’s “Free” Music

Friday, September 12th, 2014

Photo credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez, AP Let's get something straight: U2 did not give away its new album, Songs of Innocence. To be sure, if you have iTunes, on September 9 you received a free copy (without asking for it) of Songs of Innocence. But Apple paid U2 an undisclosed amount ...

Ellen DeGeneres, the Oscars, and the Era of the Visual Storyteller

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

The defining moment of the 2014 Academy Awards happened in the audience and on Twitter. While the Oscars ceremony lumbered along with the usual moments of awkward onstage patter and stars showcasing their plastic surgery, Ellen DeGeneres snapped the selfie that was seen around the world: a joyous moment of ...

5 Customer Experience Lessons from Rolling Stone’s 50 Greatest Live Acts Now

Thursday, August 8th, 2013

If you want to improve your customer experience, read the recently published Rolling Stone overview of the 50 greatest live acts now. The best live acts do something all brands aspire to do: create an experience that make their fans want to come back for more. It's a simple formula ...

The Art of Co-Branding

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

On May 7, music mogul Jermaine Dupri and I were fortunate to have a byline published in Fast Company concerning four tips for successful co-branding. Co-branding  -- or sharing your own brand with an outside brand -- is an increasingly popular way for celebrities like Justin Timberlake and major corporations ...

U2 and the revenge of "old media"

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009

Have you noticed U2's gutsy distribution strategy for the newly released No Line on the Horizon? I don't mean the predictable release of the album on MySpace prior to its March 3 launch in stores -- but rather the heavy reliance on an allegedly dead medium, the compact disc.  At ...